What Exchanges do I use and why.

I’ve been asked a few times recently about which exchanges I use so I thought I’d pull this together.

At the beginning of my Crypto journey, I signed up for a a lot… in fact I had no real idea why I’d use one over the other and even how to compare! Now things have settled down to a main pair plus supplementary ones as needed.

The main pair are Bittrex and Binance.

Both have a good reputation and have been around a while (albeit that a while in Crypto isn’t very long). Binance is the newest as it started up in 2017.  Anyhow, both seem to be pretty solid performance wise. In general I prefer using Bittrex because I like the interface better, and also because Binance has a weird thing going on where I can’t seem to clean out the entire amount in a wallet. I.e. when you sell you can only sell for example 1.69 LTC. even if you’ve actually got 1.69375849. Realistically that’s not loads of money now, but it’s not clean and in the future who knows, that could be lots of money! Over all though, between the two they have the majority of coins that I would want to trade.

One caveat is that very recently both exchanges (likely very many in the space) have temporarily paused registrations for new users. Binance is now back open again, but I think Bittrex is perhaps still paused. This is really to do with the massive influx of new users to the Crypto space and the need to increase capacity. I don’t see this as an issue for these exchanges.

Of course something the more established exchanges don’t always have is all the very latest coins, so recently I’ve also been on others:

These new ones often are a little more ropey and I’ve certainly been hit a couple of times when I wanted to trade but couldn’t because the wallets were down on the exchange. In the end that’s the added risk that comes with getting in early to some of these new coins.

In summary

When choosing an Exchange, I would look at the following:

  • Reviews / Reputation
  • Time in market
  • Performance
  • Coins available

Realistically you may not get everything, so test the deposit and withdrawal functions with small amounts. In the end if you want to pickup a new coin as the market builds you need to get on some dodgy small exchanges. Beware and don’t risk more than you can deal with losing.

Finally, the majority of times you need BTC (or ETH) to buy coins. I.e. most trading pairs are either in BTC or ETH. Therefore where do you get your BTC to start with.

Many people i.e. a large percentage of the market seem to go for Coinbase. However being in the UK, I have tended to deal with BitBargain.co.uk and Coinfloor.co.uk. Both have pros and cons.

BitBargain is very efficient and has been around ages. They are essentially a marketplace / broker, so you can generally transfer money direct from your bank account to the seller. There is however around about a 7% mark up on prices compared to the published BTC price. Coinfloor on the other hand is closer in price to the published BTC price as it’s an exchange. On the plus side it allows GBP fiat transfers using the SEPA program. This means that you can send fiat direct to the exchange and then buy BTC. There are of course charges and there is a minimum limit of £2500 so only really useful for bigger purchases. On the plus side this is a place you can transfer BTC and sell to fiat, if you’re brave enough to short the market or if you need to take some profits out to fiat.